Put your faith in get out the vote

A nonprofit you’ve never heard of spent $550,000 to mobilize the inner-city vote efforts in the last election. You will never guess who paid for it.

Faith in Minnesota, a nonprofit 501c4 corporation founded in 2017, is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the faith-based nonprofit ISAIAH, a 501c3 corporation based in St. Paul. ISAIAH also operates a Faith in Minnesota political fund, founded in 2018, and a recently registered Faith in Minnesota Action fund. All four entities are headquartered in the same office on University Avenue in St. Paul.

Since its inception in January of this year, Faith’s Action Fund has taken in $11,000, all from individuals. The largest single contributor is former Minnesota resident Lois Quam, who gave $5,000.

At the same University Avenue location, ISAIAH also runs a new effort called the New Justice Project. ISAIAH filed for the assumed name “New Justice Project” in April 2021. Faith in Minnesota filed for the assumed name “New Justice Action Fund” in July 2021.

As you would expect, the New Justice Project continues the same political work of ISAIAH/Faith in Minnesota, but is focused on the black community. Their top issue is defunding police. The group was up and running in time to endorse candidates in the 2021 Minneapolis elections.

ISAIAH is, of course, a partner in the Alliance for a Better Minnesota front group Minnesota Voice, along with the New Justice Project.

The Faith in Minnesota 501c4 nonprofit is not obligated to list donors, and is somewhat coy about its funders, saying on its website,

Faith in Minnesota will be funded by its individual members and by foundations and other entities that have the latitude to contribute to 501(c)(4) organizations.

As it happens, one foundation funding the nonprofit is the George Soros-funded Open Society Foundation. According to records on Open Society’s website, in 2019, the foundation gave $1 million to the cause, $650,000 to the Faith in Minnesota 501c4 and $350,000 to the ISAIAH 501c3.

According to records at the Minnesota Attorney General’s office, the Faith in Minnesota 501c4 raised $1.3 million in 2019 and $3.6 million in 2020. According to reports filed with the state Campaign Finance Board (CFB), the Faith in Minnesota 501c4 transferred $900,474 to the Faith in Minnesota political fund in 2020. The political fund had no other source of money that year and the Fund held no money in 2019.

In 2020, the Faith in Minnesota Fund spent $550,000 on get out the vote efforts for Democratic candidates. Specifically, the Fund hired 106 individuals to conduct “individual voter contact and GOTV.” Faith in Minnesota’s get out the vote efforts were focused on two initiatives of ISAIAH: the “Barbershop and Black Congregation Cooperative” and the “Muslim Coalition,” according to records on file at the CFP. Here is a list of all of the 2020 targets.

To recap: George Soros —> Open Society Foundation —> $650,000 to Faith in MInnesota 501c4 —> part of $900,000 to Faith in Minnesota Fund —> $550,000 for 106 staffers get out the vote in November 2020.

The more you know.